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Popular game apps: Brawl Stars

3 minutes reading time
6-13 years
Tool description
Bildquelle: supercell.com

Mobile games are particularly popular with children from around 10 years of age. One of the currently hot games is called Brawl Stars and comes from the same house as Clash of Clans and Clash Royale.

In a nutshell:

  • free real-time strategy game for mobile devices
  • available for iOS and Android
  • includes in-app purchases
  • Age information: released from 6 years (USK), recommended from approx. 10 years (Spielatgeber NRW)

What is Brawl Stars?

In this real-time strategy game, you can play simultaneously with other players on mobile via the app. You can compete against other players online in various modes, such as the jewel hunt or the vault heist. You fight against each other either alone or in teams of two or three. A round of the game lasts only a few minutes. Gradually, more modes will be unlocked.

To play, the player needs so-called brawlers, i.e. game pieces. These come in different categories or rarity levels. To get them, you need to collect a certain number of tokens, which are obtained through victories. The first Brawler is automatic, all others have to be earned. With these tokens you can also buy lootboxes, so-called “Brawlboxes”. This virtual grab bag contains a random number of coins, rare brawlers or other buffs for characters. Lootboxes can also be bought with real money.

What fascinates children and young people about it?

Games and apps that don’t cost anything are interesting for most kids because they allow free fun. Also, you can play with others in a team or against each other. The rounds are short and you get quick successes. The young players already know the game modes from other games.

The visuals of the game also delight: Everything is colorfully designed in cartoon graphics and the brawlers look funny. When you win a round, the player receives rewards. Children find the surprise effect of loot boxes exciting. Since a game round is relatively short, it is tempting to keep playing along the way in order to open more boxes and become more and more “powerful” for duels.

What is problematic about the offer?

The short game turns and constant rewards make the game attractive and entice you to want to keep playing. If you are unsure whether your child’s play behavior exceeds normal limits, you can find information here.

In Brawl Stars you play as a team or you can create and join clubs. Your child can thus come into contact with strangers who, in the worst case, are not the people they claim to be. There is a risk of cyberbullying and cybergrooming here.

Brawl Stars can tempt your child to want to spend a lot of money on game items and loot boxes to get a chance to get extra rare Brawlers or new coins, or to unlock new game rounds faster. This is how the provider makes money from the game.

What does the provider think?

The provider Supercell states that the game is only suitable for ages 13 and up. This indicates that there is content or functionality that is not suitable for children. On the official website of the provider Supercell there is a guide for parents. Among other things, this refers to existing in-app purchases in the game and how parents can manage and, if necessary, disable them. Supercell states that it will not share personal data with third parties for commercial purposes or otherwise. For safe chatting, the provider has created a “blacklist” that can be used to quickly remove certain terms. Chat messages can also be muted and thus not displayed.

What should parents pay attention to?

The best way to start is to discover the game together. Discuss whether your child is allowed to make in-app purchases, and if so, how much. Since the game tempts you to play on and on or to play a round more often on the side, you should also agree on rules for this: How long can you play per day or per week?

Use the settings options, for example, to exclude contact with strangers via the chat function. Make your child aware not to disclose personal things such as name, place of residence, etc. You can never be sure who is really sitting at the other end.

Also, be wary of third-party vendors that promise improvements to Brawl Stars and offer products for it, such as free jewels. Here, personal information and/or money are often demanded without delivering the promised product.

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